When asked if they would recommend teaching as a career to young people, only 18 percent of Americans said yes. A new report from NORC at the University of Chicago surveyed the national teacher shortage across all education channels. Forty-four percent of Americans are not likely to recommend children entering the profession, and 38 percent are only somewhat likely, but why is that?
White and Wealthier participants gave their thoughts about the teaching profession. For example, 44% of respondents said they are not likely to recommend teaching as a career path to young people looking for a career path.
Looking at the data by race and status, white participants were less supportive of teaching careers, with 47% saying they are not likely to recommend it, compared to 37% of respondents of color.
By income, wealthier respondents were less likely to encourage a teaching career, with 50% of respondents with household incomes at or above $60,000 saying they would not recommend it, compared to 36% of respondents with household incomes below $60,000.
Another IPSOS report showcased general opinions of the teaching profession and how teaching is respected, but Americans feel teachers are underpaid. Many Americans say that a teacher made a significant, positive impact on their life growing up.
Six in ten parents of children under 18 would encourage their child to become a teacher. Three-quarters of Americans approve of the teachers in their local public school district, and 61% agree with their local school district leadership.
According to a report from ABC News, the US has 300,000 school vacancies across the US. Because of this major impact, classes across the country need to make extreme changes like doubling classrooms and cutting the budget for liberal arts programs.
With the current teacher shortage, it’s more important than ever for educators to share their stories and recruit new teachers. Unfortunately, many local schools have trouble receiving the funds to keep programs open and higher-high-quality staff to fill those roles.
What Can Schools Do to Change Young People’s Negative Perception of teaching?
Teaching has always been a challenging and rewarding profession. It is a profession that requires dedication, knowledge, and a passion for helping others learn. However, teaching is often undervalued, and young people perceive the job negatively. There are several reasons why this may be the case.
First, young people may not be exposed to positive role models who are teachers. At the same time, most Americans might be able to recall at least one teacher that made their school experience an experience not to forget. Not all students get the chance to experience this, especially if they are going through rough times in their area. Second, the media often portrays the teaching profession in a negative light.
Third, the media often talks about how teachers are paid and how they are treated by their students and other staff members in their communities. They also talk about how covid affected teachers overall and how most teachers struggle and don’t want to alarm their students with their issues.
Schools can help change how young people think by ensuring that all their teachers are qualified and passionate about their work. Teachers should receive higher pay for their work so they can continue being passionate. Teaching is a valuable tool for communities, so having good staff is vital for schools around the country.
Schools can also communicate to young people the importance of education and how it can benefit them in their lives and the lives of future students who end up being under their care.
Schools can also talk to students and be more explicit about their budget and allow students to get involved with more public issues. Schools also need to make sure they add proper expanded learning programs that engage children after school so they learn a variety of subjects throughout the day and are able to be safe while parents are out working. By taking these steps, schools can help to change the negative perception that young people have of teaching and inspire them to pursue careers in education.
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The study’s findings are significant to consider as the United States moves forward in its efforts to improve education. Although teaching is a highly respected profession, more work seems to be done to ensure that future generations have access to quality education. What do you think can be done to improve teaching in America?